HANAMAULU — The Garden Island Motorcycle Club hosted its 64th annual Labor Day Hare &Hound off-road dirt bike race Saturday.
A total of 106 A class (expert) and B class (intermediate) riders took part, in which they collected checks along a trail about 30 miles long.
“Gnarly,” said rider Grayson Gonsalves of the trail. “I was taking breaks and everything. I thought I wasn’t going to finish, but I pushed through and got it done. … There was a waterfall that was super gnarly. It was all muddy. My other friend passed me, but I guess I passed him back. And, I guess we had a pretty big gap on everyone else. It was a hard one. No joke.”
Gonsalves of Kapaa was the first in the A class to get to the finish line in Hanamaulu. He collected all 30 checks and finished the course in 5 hours, 21 minutes.
“It was like survival just trying to get out and complete the whole course with all your checks,” Gonsalves said. “That’s all that really matters in this race.”
He added: “When they count the checks and they say that I got them all, it’s worth all that suffering that you’re going through.”
Travis Talbo of Eleele came in second place in the A class. He, too, collected all 30 checks and finished at 5 hours, 31 minutes.
“It was pretty nuts,” Talbo said. “My cardio started to kick in, maybe like a half-hour after the second gas check. Just kept going.”
Talbo said the most difficult part of riding through the trail was that it was so narrow.
“I would say the tightness of the trail (was hard). Everything was makable, but the tightness just kills you,” Talbo said. “Banging into trees and whatnot, that will kill you. It’s narrow, and there’s duck-unders. The hill climb is not too bad. Overall, it was makable. It was good fun.”
Talbo, who said he’s been competing in hare and hound races for about 12 years, added of his performance: “Pretty good considering I ride once a week. Yeah, pretty good.”
Nick Celario, sports writer, can be reached at 245-0437 or email@example.com.